Blog

A Blog by Lunebase
Feel Good Story

83 year-old Japanese man becomes oldest to sail solo across Pacific

Ever feel like you want to pack everything up, turn off your phone and get out of civilisation for a while?

The ultimate solitude is a dream for many. But 83 year-old Kenichi Horie achieved that and more recently. Known as Japan’s most famous yachtsman, Horie recently made it to Japan after setting sail from California – entirely on his own.

After being at sea for more than two months, Horie has become the oldest person in the world to sail across the Pacific entirely on his own.

Though some people around Horie had concerns about the trip due to his age, he seemed confident before he departed: “I’m always fine, always in shape … No overeating, no over-drinking.”

“I had the confidence that I would make it – I just wanted to take on the challenge”.

Horie later want on to say that completing the solo sail was one of his life goals, and urged others to follow suit: “Don’t let your dreams just stay as dreams. Have a goal and work towards achieving this and a beautiful life awaits.” We should all heed Kenichi’s words.

Spotlight

Zoom your way to success

Cast your mind back to 2019.

I know, I know, I do it all the time too. But humour me for a moment.

Not only was Corona something you’d only encounter on a beer garden on a Friday, but the office was a five-day-per-week venture. And meetings, if you can believe it, had to be organised face-to-face. Telephone calls had to be made. Rooms had to be booked out. Handshakes were actually expected.

What’s more, most of us had never heard of Zoom before the pandemic. Video calls were restricted to the occasional FaceTime with friends in an evening, or Skype-ing your older family members who didn’t know how to work their smartphone.

Three years on and it looks like Zoom is here to stay. Not only does it make meetings easier to organise with anyone anywhere in the world, but it also means we’re able to have more vital meetings during the working day (okay, this one might be more con than pro…).

But even with three years’ worth of Zoom under our belts, sometimes it’s not always obvious what best practice is. Read on for our list of top tips, do’s and don’ts to make sure you’ll be Zooming to your next meeting in full confidence.

  • Blur your background – not everyone wants to see your room behind you, even if it’s tidy and your bookshelf is in full view. These things can be distracting from the real thing people want to see. You!

  • If you can’t blur your background, try adding one of your own. Zoom has plenty of pre-loaded backgrounds for you to use, and a quick Google will reveal even more you can use if you wish.

  • Change your display name to something relevant. Try adding your organisation, university, or even country when attending a busy meeting so that people can easily distinguish you.

  • Dialling into a physical meeting? Don’t feel overwhelmed – approach as you would any other meeting.

  • In a physical meeting and being joined by someone on Zoom? Try and space yourselves out as much as possible so that not everyone is crammed into the screen. Speak clearly, and wait patiently for your turn.

  • Even better if you’re in the same room as others – try Zooming in from your own laptops or phones. This is much easier for the people already using Zoom. Just be sure to mute yourself whenever you’re not talking to prevent audio doubling up!

  • While you’re at it, why not max out your tech. Omnidirectional mics are made to make conference calls crystal clear, optimising voices and reducing background noise.
Feel Good Story

Judo player who lost leg achieves black belt

Ten years ago, Aaron Hawkins, aged just 18, was caught in a motorbike crash that left him with broken bones below the knee.

Doctors did their best to try and save his leg, but eventually Aaron had to have it amputated and now wears a prosthetic leg.

​​Now, ten years later, Aaron has credited the sport of judo with forcing him to “look at the positives” in life. And a lot of positives there are – as Aaron has now gone on to achieve his black belt.

Aaron’s father, Graeme Hawkins, said: “Words don’t explain how proud I am of Aaron. He’s a superstar.”

“It just proves if you put your mind to something and you want to do it, you can do it, he’s proved that.”​​​​

It’s true, Aaron is an inspiration. Hold on while I Google my nearest judo training school…

Spotlight

Longing for longevity

Bear with me… 🐻

Ever heard of Tom Brady?

If not, he’s the all-star American football player. A master of his sport.

The G.O.A.T. (Greatest Of All Time for those of us not down with the kids).

Aged 43, with his class peers all long since retired, he won the Super Bowl (think the Champions League or Wimbledon of American Football) with a brand new team.

It would be convenient to think Brady came preloaded with some unattainable, far-fetched genetic gift not accessible to me or you. It makes me feel better about not making it off the couch for a run for the last six months, anyway.

The simple truth may be more banal. His longevity may just be the product of better habits than yours and mine.

But what can we learn from Brady when it comes to our longevity, whether at home or work or life in general? A lot of it comes down to self discipline.

As Brady said: “If I don’t really work at it … and if I don’t play to my strengths, I’m a very average football player”.

That’s all well and good for the sports superstars, but how does this translate to day-to-day life for the rest of us? Well, discipline in life’s most basic habits is where we can find longevity.

Read on for our list of areas where care and attention can really pay off in the long-term:

  1. Get regular health checkups – whether that’s checking in with your mental health with loved ones, or acting early on any physical signs of concern.
  2. Let food be thy medicine. Getting in your five a day is still one of the best ways of reducing the risk of serious health problems.
  3. …and on that note, try and stick to an eating routine: eat early, and less often throughout the day.
  4. Get moving. Yes, walking counts – try and hit that step count every day if nothing else).
  5. Constantly work on quitting bad habits. What can you drop today that you’ll thank yourself for in six months?
  6. Make sleep your superpower. 7-9 hours a night is ideal – any less than this and you may begin to notice a change in your mental and physical condition.
Feel Good Story

Anonymous man wins 200 million Euros in lottery, donates almost all of it to saving the Earth

Imagine you are a newly appointed town mayor in the 1920s. You’re keen to bring change to the community and make a positive impact. You pull up your suspenders, pick out your favourite hat, and take to the streets. Soon you find a fence, built across a path that you know is popular amongst the townsfolk.

A quick-thinking mayor might see the fence and say, “I don’t see the use of this. Let’s tear it down so that it no longer gets in people’s way”. To which a more reasoned and forward-thinking mayor might say, “I don’t see the use of this. However, just because I don’t see the use of this, doesn’t mean the fence has no use to somebody. I can’t reasonably destroy this fence without knowing the reasons why it was built.”

I stumbled across the work of GK Chesterton from his 1929 book The Thing. It contains the principle commonly known as Chesterton’s Fence, something that is within the Wikipedia editing community even today.

The logic states that until we establish the reason why something was created in the first place, we have no business destorying it. The reason may be no longer relevant, or even valuable; we just need to be aware of what the reason is. And this applies whether we’re debating to keep a fence, a sentence on Wikipedia, or a big decision that needs to be made.

When we’re making big decisions, we ought to be aware that some choices can have long lasting effects. Like where to send your child to school, whether to take that new job, who you really want in your circle of close friends, or how to react to that comment from your mother-in-law.

It goes without saying that in situations like these that we should take on more active and reflective thinking processes before hastily making decisions. Second-order thinking is the practice of not just considering the consequences of our decisions, but also the consequences of those consequences – just like an expert chess player might be thinking many moves ahead when deciding which piece to move next.

Everyone can manage first-order thinking, which is just considering the immediate anticipated result of an action. It’s simple and quick, usually requiring little effort. By comparison, second-order thinking is more complex and time-consuming. The fact that it is difficult and unusual is what makes the ability to do it such a powerful advantage.

Otherwise, we may end up with unintended consequences: second- and third-order effects we don’t want, spreading like ripples on a pond and causing damage for years. Like Chesterton’s Fence, we ought to establish the reason behind decision-making – and the future effects of our decisions – before we act.

Spotlight

Decisions, decisions… divisons?

Imagine you are a newly appointed town mayor in the 1920s. You’re keen to bring change to the community and make a positive impact. You pull up your suspenders, pick out your favourite hat, and take to the streets. Soon you find a fence, built across a path that you know is popular amongst the townsfolk.

A quick-thinking mayor might see the fence and say, “I don’t see the use of this. Let’s tear it down so that it no longer gets in people’s way”. To which a more reasoned and forward-thinking mayor might say, “I don’t see the use of this. However, just because I don’t see the use of this, doesn’t mean the fence has no use to somebody. I can’t reasonably destroy this fence without knowing the reasons why it was built.”

I stumbled across the work of GK Chesterton from his 1929 book The Thing. It contains the principle commonly known as Chesterton’s Fence, something that is within the Wikipedia editing community even today.

The logic states that until we establish the reason why something was created in the first place, we have no business destorying it. The reason may be no longer relevant, or even valuable; we just need to be aware of what the reason is. And this applies whether we’re debating to keep a fence, a sentence on Wikipedia, or a big decision that needs to be made.

When we’re making big decisions, we ought to be aware that some choices can have long lasting effects. Like where to send your child to school, whether to take that new job, who you really want in your circle of close friends, or how to react to that comment from your mother-in-law.

It goes without saying that in situations like these that we should take on more active and reflective thinking processes before hastily making decisions. Second-order thinking is the practice of not just considering the consequences of our decisions, but also the consequences of those consequences – just like an expert chess player might be thinking many moves ahead when deciding which piece to move next.

Everyone can manage first-order thinking, which is just considering the immediate anticipated result of an action. It’s simple and quick, usually requiring little effort. By comparison, second-order thinking is more complex and time-consuming. The fact that it is difficult and unusual is what makes the ability to do it such a powerful advantage.

Otherwise, we may end up with unintended consequences: second- and third-order effects we don’t want, spreading like ripples on a pond and causing damage for years. Like Chesterton’s Fence, we ought to establish the reason behind decision-making – and the future effects of our decisions – before we act.